How to Make a Model Car Out of a Box

Anyone who has children, or who has had children, knows all too well the unexplained charm that an empty box holds for youngsters. And this is a great thing because it means that they can be easily and inexpensively entertained for hours on end. You and your child can create this car from one or more empty boxes and other items around the house. Children love decorating anything, so be sure to supply leftover bits of fabric, gift wrap and colored paper, crayons or colored markers, stickers, glitter, paints, beads, uncooked macaroni and anything else the child thinks is pretty. Any size box is fine, as long as it's roomy enough for your child to stand up inside of its perimeter and carry it around.

Open the top flaps of the box. Remove three of them with a utility knife or box cutter. Leave one flap, which will become the windshield. Or leave two flaps--one for the windshield, and one for the back window.

Turn the box upside down and draw a circle in the center of the bottom of the box. The circle should be large enough to allow your child to slip his or her feet through and pull the box up to wear around the waist. Reinforce the bottom of the box with masking tape if necessary.

Draw and then cut out armholes near the top of the sides if the box is a large one so that your child can wear the car like a shirt. Otherwise, just fashion shoulder straps from string or twine and tie them to holes poked in the upper body of the car.

Glue a smaller box to the front of the car for the hood, and another to the back for the trunk. Ask your child to decorate a paper plate for a steering wheel. Attach the steering wheel to the "dashboard" of the interior of the car with a brad, so that it will turn. Cut "flames" from colored cardboard or construction paper and glue them onto the back tires.

Use permanent markers or paints to create doors on the car. Add tires, lights and windshield wipers. Tires can be made from paper plates and attached with brads so that they will turn, if you wish. Create a license plate with your child's name on it from a plain piece of paper, and affix it to the trunk of the car. Colored tape is great for racing stripes. Ask your child to finish decorating the car. Boys and girls, start your engines!


Be very careful when using a box cutter or utility knife.